The Fall: Changeling teaser

My spirit suddenly trembled, and for just a moment I thought my hold on the owl body would break. Nearby, the harpy eagle body that was Eleri let out a mournful wail that even the wind could not swallow. Though the dragon below me did not falter, I knew Mama had felt it as well; her sprit shivered loud enough for me to hear it, to feel it within myself.

I recovered, head spinning. What was that?

The dragon screamed, and Mama answered, I don’t know. Stay close to Eleri, just in—

Then it came again, before she had a chance to finish.

The pain struck first.

It was pain that I could never have imagined—pain that stabbed my heart and burned my bones. My vision blackened; I no longer felt the glacial wind ruffling through my feathers.

And then it happened.

With as much warning as a hiccup in time, I was thrown from my false body.

For just a moment, we were suspended in time, and I could see everything with such perfect clarity.

Eleri had been pushed back into her body; her long hair streamed behind her as she fell like the licking tendrils of a fire’s shadow. Mama still wore her dragon skin, but her wings had gone limp; Morwenna was little more than a blotch of polished copper amidst bronze scales and a flat grey sky.

In the moment before time resumed, the whole world was quiet, and realization slowly crushed me—

I was trying to fly on clipped wings. Continue reading

Purity smashes words

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PURITY is now for sale on Smashwords!

Not to keep tooting my own horn though I love it, but here’s yet another post about PURITY. I’m sure everyone wants me to shut up at this point, but hush, I have words.

PURITY is now (finally) for sale at Smashwords, though we’re still waiting shipment to their premium catalogue, so it isn’t ready for Apple, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, etc, just yet. Now that I know what I’m doing when it comes to Smashwords formatting (which is a lot more difficult than formatting for Amazone, let me tell you), it won’t take nearly so long to get the next book I publish out into the vast world of the interwebz.

I’ll keep you all informed as to when the premium catalogue gets accepted and shipped and actually in the webstores.

 PURITY is only $4.99 on Smashwords!

And don’t forget either,

 PURITY is on Amazon for $4.99!

DISCLAIMER: The formatting for Smashwords forced me to change some of the accented words that gave PURITY some of its Old World flair. I use a few foreign words and phrases, because the majority of the story takes place in Romania. These foreign accents didn’t translate well into the Smashwords format, and I was forced to change them. For example: Ţepeş became Tepesstrigoi morţi became strigoi mortiBraşov became Brasov. It takes the charm out of it for me. That all being said, if you want to keep that aforementioned Old World flair, purchase the AMAZON copy. If you don’t give a single fuck, by all means, go ahead to SMASHWORDS.

I’ll have a real post soon enough, I promise. A hairventure, too, most likely!

What do you look for in a book?

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A portion of my own book collection.

Everyone chooses books for different reasons. It might be that they only read one genre, or prefer dialogue to action, or vice versa. There are many ways to choose a book.

I start with my genres when I’m looking at a book. Being that I work in a bookstore, I’m subject to all sorts of books every day, and I like to think that I read a variety of things, but I still always look for a few certain things to begin with. My favourite genre is fiction, and to break it down, I prefer epic and high fantasy, and historical fiction. Despite the old adage, I do judge a book by its cover, because a cover is like the face of a person: it doesn’t tell you much about the inside, but it helps you choose whether or not you want to keep going. If that makes me terribly shallow, so be it. I have found many books with terrible covers that are decent reads – but I have also found many terrible books with terrible covers that should have warned me. Again, working in a bookstore gives me access to this every day.

I love epic dialogue. Characters who can have banter and arguments back and forth, and build relationships that way. That being said, I do really love action and description. Purple prose isn’t something that’s really enticed me, because it’s so exhausting to read after a while, but I do appreciate colourful settings and thoughtful descriptions. Descriptions help make a character and a story, and a combination of dialogue and description is what really does it for me. If I had to choose, I would probably pick dialogue over description, though, being that I do more of that myself.

I look for strong female characters who don’t behave like childish idiots, and history that has been properly researched. Fantasy that is believable, despite being just that – fantasy. I really dislike most urban fantasy, despite PURITY being technically classed as urban fantasy. If a book has a sassy-looking woman on the cover wearing pleather and holding a sword, I won’t give the book the time of day. It might be the book that changes my life, and I’ll never know. It just looks so silly to me that I can’t even stomach it.

And it probably goes without saying, but I won’t read a book if it isn’t well written. When Fifty Shades of Grey was hot shit last year, many of my friends and family insisted I read it. I wouldn’t, and not because it was filthy erotica, but because I heard it was terribly written. I am a fan of the Game of Thrones HBO show on tv, and upon the urging of a friend I started reading the Song of Ice and Fire books. I seriously dislike Martin’s writing style. I know it’s terrible to like the show more than the books, but oh my god. I’m love the overall story, but the minute and useless details and rambling idiocy and text walls and flashbacks make me want to slit my throat. It’s taken me half a year to read two and a half of the books, and I can read faster than most.

Historical fiction that’s well done, epic fantasy, bold dialogue and beautiful descriptions, and an understanding of good writing. Pretty straightforward, actually.

So how does a book jump off the shelf for you?

The conundrum of being a writer

WRITER’S BLOCK.

There. I said it. And what a phrase it is.

Two simple words shouldn’t be so terrifying. But they are. They really are.

Whenever I want to sit down and write, I’m at a place where I can’t – namely, at work. And vice versa: whenever I have time to sit down and write, I’m unable to do much more than gawk at my computer screen or get wholly distracted by imgur or the newfangled television James set up in my bedroom. Even as I write this post, I’m getting distracted by the Tudors.

Like, three days distracted. I’m sick.

But the thing is, distraction is the only cure. If you sit there and stare at the cursor, waiting for something to happen and damning your brain for suddenly being a sack of shit, nothing will ever come to you. Distraction is the only means.

My best time for inspiration is Tuesdays and Wednesdays at work. Why, you might ask? Well, I might answer, because that is the day the LMPI – import – magazines arrive at the store, and the day I do nothing but sit in the back and price and receive. It’s monotonous and distracting, and because of it my house is littered with handwritten notes for full write-up at a later date.

I’m weathering a bit of a slump right now. It isn’t terrible, and I am powering through it, but it’s a challenge. After not touching ABOMINATION for a while and only working on OF THE ARBOUR, I’ve pretty much switched places, only I’m trudging on the former and now flying through it as I did with OF THE ARBOUR.

Ah, the life of a writer is a troubled one.

What does everyone else do to power through writer’s block?

A new year

Happy New Year!

The fourteenth year of the new millennium is upon us. Just when I started getting used to writing 2013 on things, too.

2013 was an interesting year for me. It had plenty of highlights – some good, and some bad.

I hope 2014 will be as eventful, if not more.

    • I hope to publish CHANGELING, my one true love of fantasy novels.
    • I’ve made a pact to go to the gym, which I can see going fairly well. The main reason I never went before was because I had no one to go with, but I have two friends in said pact this time.
    • I’ll, in all likelihood, have to move again – but this time to live with the aforementioned love of my life.
    • And also get a cat.
    • And maybe blog properly, because my current schedule is shit and should maybe be managed better.

How has 2013 shaped up for everyone else? The general consensus that I have seen was that it was a mediocre year – but together we can make 2014 amazing.

Happy New Year, everybody!

for auld lang syne, my dear
for auld lang syne,
we’ll take a cup o’ kindness yet
for auld lang syne!

The finale: Of the Arbour teaser

His palms were sweating, and he doubted it had anything to do with the fact that it was already so hot out despite being early in the summer. For the hundredth time in a minute, he wiped his hands on his pants and wished he could scratch the sweat off his scalp.

The professors were still assembling themselves in front of the crowd that stood before the great wooden doors of the Arbour. Clenching his teeth, Sage stole a furtive glance through the little crowd. He couldn’t see Briar in the sea of combed hair and solemn faces, but he spotted Ash further down the line, looking as stoic as ever.

Behind the professors stood the rest of the Arbour’s body. Kell was easily visible despite the number, standing high above the others as the sun caught her hair and turned it to fire. And though he couldn’t see her, somewhere in that mass of people was Arcana.

Murmurs brought his attention back to the line of professors. They seemed to have finally organized themselves into a neat line, squinting against the sunlight. The grandmaster stood at their centre, wearing the same frown he always did despite the delighted atmosphere thick around the two groups of students. It was a joyful day, from the mood to the blue sky and sunlight, but one would never be able to tell by looking at the grandmaster’s sour expression. Sage wondered if the old man was capable of a truly genuine smile, or if he had long ago lost the ability.

“Children,” the grandmaster called, and it seemed as though even the birds quieted to hear his words.

The sweat burst out on Sage’s palms with renewed vigour. Part of him was still unable to wrap his head around this. He had made it. He had survived fifteen years of brutal training to become one of the most renowned and elite warriors in the known world. Continue reading

Updates, because I suck

I’ve been really bad at keeping this updated in recent weeks – hell, in recent months, even. My real life has been crazy, and trying to keep up with it is a battle. So here are some idle updates, and I promise I’ll do more teasers or something soon. Maybe a book giveaway. Been pondering that one for some time.

The Of the Arbour rewrite is at ~45 000 words. Sage has left the Arbour and is starting is life as a mercenary, and pretends to be Sage of Courton so nobody knows he’s from the Arbour.

Abomination is at ~150 000 words. I’ve been a bit nonfunctional with her lately because, I think, I’ve been so caught up in OtArb. But otherwise, she’s progressing nicely.

I’m dragging my ass and haven’t processed my ISBNs yet, even though I was assigned some. Working on it.

I’ve passed the point of season 3 in a Storm of Swords. I’ve learned to bear GRRM’s writing style, as I found it terribly grating when I first started reading the books. I can’t imagine I’ll ever do reviews of these, because I’m biased by the show, but eh, never say never.

So I guess that’s that. Woo.

Dark dreams: Of the Arbour teaser

Letting out a long sigh, he shut his eyes.

And opened them again a moment later when a cool hand touched his face. It took a moment for his vision to adjust, but the infirmary seemed much darker than it had only a moment ago. The beds were all empty and though the candles were lit, the room was swallowed in darkness.

The hand that cupped his cheek was joined by another, and a shadow loomed over him.

Sage squinted through the darkness, but the shadow remained veiled. “Who are you?” he asked.

One hand lifted and fingers combed through his hair. How you look like him, a soft voice whispered. I wish he could see you now.

Sage glanced down at the hands that touched him. Long and slender, with creamy skin marred only by calluses from long years of labour. “Maybe he will see me one day,” he suggested, if only to comfort the shadow. It seemed so terribly sad; he didn’t want it to suffer.

It gave an unhappy sigh and once more cupped his face in both hands. You deserve to know what happened. You deserve to know the truth. Bastard, they call you. Orphan. They are cruel words spoken by cruel children who do not know the truth. You will do great things some day, my son. I know you will. I have always known. You are the sunshine of my life.

The hands slipped away, and the shadow faded into darkness.

Sage jerked forward and reached after it. “Wait! Please, don’t go!”

His words were greeted with silence.

He gave it another moment, then flung the blankets off his bed. He had to find the woman behind the shadow. He didn’t know what was driving him, but he had no choice.

His injured leg bothered him little as he stood and padded across the room. There was no sign of the woman who had spoken. It was as if she had disappeared from the infirmary entirely.

Well, no matter.

Moving slowly so his steps made little noise on the stone floor, he wandered across the length of the room to the door leading out to the rest of the Arbour. The handle was icy when his palm touched it. He winced and pulled his hand back, and listened at the door instead. Silence rang from the other side.

Gritting his teeth, he opened the door and stepped into the bitter cold.

He was no longer in the Arbour. Continue reading

Release… the PURITY!

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The time has come—

Purity is upon us!

Caitlyn is a bright, headstrong girl with a twisted past she unconsciously smothers into lost memories. When she is only eleven, she is kidnapped by her father’s business rival in hopes of giving up much-needed information. Refusing to talk – and knowing nothing of use – she is placed in the Silver Room, a desperate man’s sinister torture chamber, where she meets the monsters who inhabit her nightmares. 

A lifetime later, on an innocent summer vacation to her paternal relatives in Romania’s notorious province Transylvania, these memories return in a flood when she meets strangers with an aversion to sunlight and bloodstained smiles. 

As prisoner to a condemned prince, Caitlyn becomes privy to an underground world where myth and nightmare are all too real, and where at every turn, a new threat emerges. 

With dogs waging war and men bent on bloodshed, Caitlyn must team up with the unlikeliest of people to save what is theirs, while standing on the precipice of destruction.

Are vampires your thing? Werewolves? Dark magic, mythology, and a world only dreamed of? Heroines out of their element, brooding heroes, and allies who toe the line; blood and bones and an internal struggle; business and politics, scheming and plotting – Purity has all this and more.

 PURITY is now available for sale on Amazon, for a scant $4.99

Postscript: Final formatting for Apple Books, Smashwords, and Barnes & Noble will happen over the weekend, and she will be for sale in those places sometime next week. Keep your eyes peeled for further updates!

I’m so excited I can barely function right now 😀

The countdown to Purity

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OCTOBER 25, 2013

 

A friendly reminder to all that it is only 3 days until Purity is released on Amazon. Once it’s prepared for release on Apple Books, Barnes & Noble, and Smashwords, I’ll let out another announcement. Friday is the day, people. We’re coming up quick 🙂